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Astros' offense struggles in 2-0 loss to Atlanta; Braves lead World Series 2-1

Ian Anderson didn't allow a hit through five innings, and the Braves bullpen held Houston to two hits.

ATLANTA — Rookie Ian Anderson and the Atlanta bullpen took a no-hit bid into the eighth inning and the Braves blanked the Houston Astros 2-0 to take a two games to one lead in the World Series.

Astros pinch-hitter Aledmys Díaz blooped a leadoff single in the eighth to break up the no-hit bid. Left fielder Eddie Rosario appeared to hesitate and the ball fell just in front of his glove.

Austin Riley hit an RBI double in the third off Astros starter Luis Garcia and Travis d’Arnaud homered off Kendall Graveman in the eighth.

Anderson was pulled after five innings and 76 pitches with a no-hitter intact. Relievers A.J. Minter and Luke Jackson kept Houston hitless until Díaz singled off Tyler Matzek.

Braves closer Will Smith worked around a leadoff single in the ninth by Alex Bregman.

Game 4 is Saturday night at Truist Park in Atlanta. Houston manager Dusty Baker says Zack Greinke will start for the Astros.

RELATED: There's only been one no-hitter in a World Series game

Braves vs. Astros updates 

First inning: The Astros and Braves both got runners on base via walks, but neither team get a hit and neither scored. It's 0-0 after one inning.

Second inning:  Atlanta's Travis d'Arnaud doubled, but after an intentional walk, was stranded.  Still 0-0 after two.

Third inning: After Houston didn't score in the top of the inning, Atlanta got on the board in the bottom of the frame when Austin Riley doubled in a run.

Fourth inning: Neither team scored, but Luis Garcia had to pitch out of a major bases-loaded jam. And he did, with the exclamation point being the strikeout of d'Arnaud.

Fifth inning: Neither team scored in the fifth. The Astros are still without a hit. Ian Anderson threw five innings of hitless baseball tonight. It's been a while since a rookie pitcher went five hitless...

Sixth inning: Both teams went scoreless in the sixth, with the final out in the bottom of the inning being an absolute gem by Kyle Tucker!  Still 1-0 Braves.

Seventh inning: No score in the seventh

Eighth inning: The Astro finally got a hit in the top of the inning. But in the bottom half, d'Arnaud went deep to give Atlanta a 2-0 lead.

 

Ninth inning: Alex Bregman got the Astros' second hit of the night, but the game ended on a Kyle Tucker flyout.

Hank Aaron, Jr., threw out the ceremonial first pitch 

Credit: AP
Hank Aaron Jr. throws out the ceremonial first pitch before Game 3 of baseball's World Series between the Houston Astros and the Atlanta Braves Friday, Oct. 29, 2021, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

KHOU 11 crews in Atlanta

We've got you covered during these road games with our KHOU 11 starting lineup: Jason Bristol, Jeremy Booth, Shern-Min Chow and Xavier Walton. Watch for their live reports from Atlanta all weekend!

Sunny day in H-Town, Rainy night in A-Town

The weather's been messy in Atlanta today, but God smiled on Houston with sunshine and cool temps. This photo of today's sunrise over downtown H-Town by Alyssa Johnson proves the big guy must be an Astros fan! Look at those beautiful colors and there's Minute Maid down at the bottom. #ForTheH #ItsOurTime

Credit: Alyssa Johnson
Sunrise over downtown H-Town

RELATED: Atlanta weather: Mother Nature may have say in World Series Game 3

'Go Go Astros' by Clear Creek choir

The Clear Creek High School choir showed off their Astros gear -- and their voices -- with a song to cheer on the 'Stros.

Check out their rendition of the Mack Hayes' original. Well-done, y'all!

Who's singing the national anthem tonight?

Zac Brown, lead singer of The Zac Brown Band will perform the national anthem before Game 3 of the World Series. 

Credit: Associated Press
Zac Brown makes his way around the CMT stage during his band's performance.

World Series Game 3 preview

The Braves were 42-38 on their home turf in 2021. Atlanta has a team on-base percentage of .317 this postseason, Eddie Rosario leads them with an OBP of .471, including six extra base hits and 11 RBIs.

The Astros were 44-37 on the road in 2021. Houston has a team batting average of .276 this postseason, Yordan Alvarez has led them with an average of .410, including eight extra base hits and nine RBIs.

The Astros won the last meeting 7-2. Jose Urquidy earned his first victory this postseason and Jose Altuve went 2-for-5 with a double, a home run and an RBI for Houston. Max Fried took his second loss of the postseason for Atlanta.

Top performers

Adam Duvall leads the Braves with 38 home runs and has 113 RBIs.

Kyle Tucker leads the Astros with 70 extra base hits and is batting .295.

During the playoffs

Braves: .252 batting average, 3.64 ERA, outscored opponents by six runs

Astros: .276 batting average, 4.42 ERA, outscored opponents by 22 runs

Injuries

Braves: Josh Tomlin: (neck), Mike Soroka: (achilles), Charlie Morton: (fibula), Grant Dayton: (shoulder), Marcell Ozuna: (hand), Ronald Acuna Jr.: (knee).

Astros: Justin Verlander: (elbow), Andre Scrubb: (shoulder), Rafael Montero: (shoulder), Tyler Ivey: (undisclosed), Kent Emanuel: (elbow), Pedro Baez: (shoulder), Freudis Nova: (knee), Taylor Jones: (covid-19).

Top World Series headlines

Pre-game updates

The tarp is off at Truist Park.

Game 3 a throwback with batters facing pitchers for 1st time

Game 3 of the World Series will be a bit of a throwback to the days before interleague play and players frequently changing teams. 

None of the Atlanta Braves have faced Houston starter Luis Garcia. 

The only Astros player who has hit against Braves starter Ian Anderson is Marwin Gonzalez, who is 0 for 3. 

This weekend could mark the final general plate appearances by pitchers in major league history. 

Garcia, 0 for 6 at the plate in his big league career, will borrow a bat from teammate Yordan Álvarez for his trips to the plate in the National League city.

Credit: AP
Houston Astros starting pitcher Luis Garcia throws against the Boston Red Sox during the sixth inning in Game 6 of baseball's American League Championship Series Friday, Oct. 22, 2021, in Houston. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)

Hank Aaron molded careers of World Series managers Snitker, Baker

Hank Aaron's imprint is on the World Series. His number 44 will be seen on the outfield grass at Atlanta's Truist Park for Game 3. 

His impact is also evident on the game's managers, Houston's Dusty Baker and Atlanta's Brian Snitker. 

Aaron was responsible for convincing Baker to sign with the Braves as a teenage outfielder in 1967. 

As the Braves’ farm director, Aaron set the path for Snitker’s long career as a coach and manager. When it was clear Snitker had no future as a catcher or first baseman, Aaron offered an opportunity to remain in the game as a coach.

Credit: AP
FILE - In this June 20, 2009, file photo, Cincinnati Reds manager Dusty Baker, left, stands with his son Darren Baker, center, and baseball great Hank Aaron as the national anthem is played at the Civil Rights Game ceremony before a game between the Chicago White Sox and the Cincinnati Reds in Cincinnati. Baker, now the manager of the Houston Astros, and Brian Snitker, manager of the Atlanta Braves, say Aaron would have loved being able to watch this World Series. (AP Photo/David Kohl, File)

Former Texas Rangers manager sending Braves home after near miss a decade ago

Beloved baseball lifer Ron Washington is finally getting another shot at a World Series title. 

It comes 10 years after he was twice in the same game within one strike of winning a championship as manager of the Texas Rangers. He is now emphatically waving Atlanta Braves runners around third base. 

And he's doing daily fielding drills with their All-Star infielders, even before World Series games late in October. 

The 69-year-old Washington says this is the second-best thing he can do in baseball if he's not a manager.

Credit: AP
Atlanta Braves third base coach Ron Washington watches during batting practice before Game 1 in baseball's World Series against the Houston Astros Tuesday, Oct. 26, 2021, in Houston. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)